Sep 16, 2013

Pet Insurance - A Great Way to Save Money on Vet Costs for Your Dog

There are a lot of obvious ways to save money. What’s less obvious is how many ways there are to spend money. And in reality the two go hand-in-hand.

One way to spend a lot of money is to own a pet, particularly a dog. Don’t get me wrong, I'm a happy dog owner myself, but if you’re a pet owner like me you know how expensive it can be.
According to the 2011-2012 APPA National Pet Owners Survey the average annual cost of owning a dog is $1,542. That’s over $128 per month! What’s not considered in the APPA number is the risk that your dog suffers a severe illness or injury.

As veterinary care continues to improve prices have continued to skyrocket. So how can a pet owner manage the risk of a $5,000, $10,000 or even $15,000 vet bil.

Pet health insurance.

Magruff is like a son to Kim and Lou realized she would deplete their savings and rob a bank to pay for Magruff's veterinary care. About 18 months after purchasing their policy Magruff started limping during a hike in the Rockies. After a visit to a canine orthopedic specialist x-rays showed that Magruff had a severe case of hip dysplasia that would require hip replacement surgery. The total cost of the surgery was $5,202.74.

The news even got worse when Lou and Kim learned that Magruff would eventually need his other hip replaced as well. So the entire cost to replace both hips would cost them well over $10,000.

Luckily for Lou and Kim they had pet insurance coverage and were reimbursed $4,306.04 for the first hip. And when the second hip gets replaced they will save another $4,300 because they have pet insurance. In total, excluding other potential health issues Magruff may have, they will save over $8,600 with pet insurance.

It's a good thing the opted for coverage because today Lou and Kim have two baby boys who eat a lot and need a lot of diapers!

Pet insurance can be a life saver if your dog suffers from a serious illness like cancer or heart disease. The key is to buy a policy early while your pet is young and healthy because pet insurance companies do not cover pre-existing conditions. That means if your dog is already sick or has been diagnosed with a condition that condition will not be covered.

I encourage all pet owners to purchase pet insurance. For only $20-30 per month you can make sure your dog gets the treatment he or she needs when they need it the most. It’s the responsible thing to do because you can’t predict your pet’s health ... Just don’t wait until it’s too late!